The West Republics is a Confederacy of democratic states located on the planet of WG in the continent of Hercula Major situated on the eastern coast of the West Walton Region. The Modern West Republics consists of two states (Hibernia and York) however throughout history the number of states has fluctuated greatly as territories were incorporated or lands seceded due to war, colonization or treaty. The West Republics are unique in that all member states are very autonomous and have their own functioning democratic governing system however the federal government of the West Republics is a Monarchy albiet a weak Monarchy with no official powers. The Monarchy of The West Republics has been held by House Swann since 1780 (The inception of the West Republics Polity) and is one of the few unifying factors of what is a diverse and varied history. The Current monarch of The West Republics is Kaiser Robart Swann.
Colonial Era (1450-1776)
In 1450 explorers for the Aquitanian Kingdoms discovered the Island of Eire the seat of the High King of the lands of Hibernia. Hibernia at this time was an old celtic culture governed by a patchwork of Lords who swore allegiance to the High King in a medieval fashion. Trade between the Aquitanian and Hibernian Kingdoms was immedietly established a burgeoning trade as Aquitanian merchants purchased the abundant stores of Alpacan wool from the Hibernian Lords in exchange for Gold and Aquitanian Wines.
In 1475 a great plague broke out in Hibernia which killed a million people or about a third of the population this occured in confluence with a war of succession between several claimants to the High Throne. This decimated the Hibernian Kingdoms and in 1505 a fleet ships from The Greater Aquitanian Empire landed in Eire and Lord Backer took control of the Capital city. Several Lords in Mainland Hibernia resisted however most recognized the Aquitanians as the new governors and Hibernia was officially declared a colony of The Greater Aquitanian Empire in 1507.
After receiving allegiance from Hibernia Aquitania continued to expand conquering and colonizing other kingdoms in the West Walton region (named so as it was land West of Walton an ancient Aquitanian King) including north of Hibernia into the free Kingdoms (Kingdoms not having pledged allegiance to the High King) aswell as lands south accross the Hibernian Gulf in the mostly uninhabited penninsula of Rein (Modern Day Warsaw)
Many indigenous lords were replaced over the years with Aquitanian nobility pushing along assimilation of the already similar cultures by 1700 30% of Hibernian nobles could trace their ancestry back to Aquitanian nobility and heritage most of these nobles were placed in the wealthiest and most populous provinces. Many common people immigrated from Aquitania aswell to claim land for themselves as the restrictions on commonors owning land were abolished in 1680. Many became potato or wheat farmers and the brewing of old Hibernian beer became a large export industry along with Hibernias famous wool, this brought new wealth to the colonies and several banks were established which made money offering loans to neighbors in the region especially the Constantinos to the north.
In 1740 Aquitania enetered the Wars of Expansion with neighbors in their region. Previously Aquitania had ruled the colonies minimally however with the advent of the war a draft was instituted in the colonies to provide for musketmen in the rifle legions. This caused much tension and at the close of the war even though Aquitania was victorious an export and sales tax was instituted on the colonies to help pay for the war. Smuggling became a national pastime and in response Aquitania sent more ships and soldiers which needed to be housed in the private homes of citizens putting further strain on relations.
Along with the strenuous relations between mother country and colony a great wave of enlightenment began as printing press technologies reached Hibernia a national newspaper began to be printed owned by Harris Swann, an old Celtic nobleman, in 1760 called The Eire Gazette which dug up muck on the Aquitanian nobility. In 1765 a Pamphlet called Common Sense was released espousing republican ideals and basic human rights that were being violated by the "Aquitanian regime". In 1776 the first battle of the revolution was fought when Aquitanian riflemen marched on the town of Darry to capture arms that were being stockpiled by an unfriendly local militia. The local militia met the Aquitanian troops just outside the town and shots were fired begginging the War for Independence.
War For Independence (1776-1779)
After the battle of Darry a quick and violent revolution ensued and the garrisoned Aquitanian armies were forced to fortify themselves in a few select cities and forts. New Independent governments were formed in all 3 colonies based on representation rather then the old nobility as the nobility was seen as being in leaugue with the Aquitanians however Harris Swann a rich nobleman was appointed to command the armies as it was his wealth acquired from his activities in Financing and Print that paid for much of the newly commisioned Free Legions. Along with this army of 10,000 regular soldiers militias numbering 100,000 accross the colonies were formed. The war was thought to be a quick one when news of the capture of the capital Eire was announced a month after the Battle of Darry however just weeks later the Free Legions were defeated by a large dispatch of Aquitanian Regulars lead by Commander Phillip Branbuerg in The Battle of Eire.
The War continued for several years in a stalemate as Aquitanian troops would make incursions into rebel held territory from strongholds in Eire and other large cities driving rebels back only finding themselves being forced to retreat after running low on supplies. As power was not concentrated throughout the colonies there was no strategic position that could be captured to force capitulation of the colonies however as the war dragged on funds for the Free Legions ran low
In the Winter of 1778 Commander Harris launched a sneak attack on a force of 4000 Aquitanian troops during the Battle of Alexandria marking the first major victory for rebel forces this caused the Aquitanians to abandon their campaigns in the northern colonies (Hibernia and York) and insstead began concentrating forces in the southern colony of Rein. This made it difficult for the Free Legions (which had seen an increase in recruits after the Battle of Alexandria) to engage the Aquitanian armies as Aquitania maintained naval superiority. However in a risky gamble the Free Legions hired a fleet of Pirate ships to ferry them accross the Sea of Hibernia to land out side of Fort Harren the force managed to surprise the main Aquitanian Army stationed there forcing the surrender of Commander Branbeurg to Commander Swann in 1779.
Later a the Eire Accords was signed declaring a peace between Aquitania and the newly established and recognized West Republics.
Each of the 3 colonies established democratic representative forms of government and a confederate union was established between the 3 states and House Swann was declared the Royal Family to represent the Republics in Foreign affairs. The powers of the central government were very limited however The Rights of Man Clause determined that it was the job of the central government to ensure that the freedoms of any citizen in the West Republic was not to be infringed. This style of governance persists to modern day though the powers of the Royalty varied greatly thorugh different time periods
A Country Divided
As the newly formed country decided what direction to take two politcal parties emerged including The Federalists and The Republicans. The Federalists pushed for policies thats supported Industrialization and Commercialization while the Republicans supported policies that encouraged an Agrarian Society based on eqaulity as was proper in a democracy. In Eire where the Federalists maintained power an industrial class began to emerge and Eire became the economic aswell as politcal heart of The Republics Banking Brewing and fishing became important economic activities. In the southern state of Rein cash crops like tobacco and cotton became important drivers of the economy and a large slave trade grew up around these industries. By 1800 30 percent of the population of Rein was enslaved (1.5 million people)
Economic Struggles and The Rise of Communism (1850-1900)
As the prices for crops like potatoes and wheat fell in the West Walton region many farmers in Mainland Hibernia and York began to experience economic hardship. This was compounded by an enclosure movement which saw the landed Gentry centralizing their operations forcing many farmers off the holdfasts they had rented and farmed for decades. This put many farmers out of work and indebted to bankers in Eire as they had financed the purchase of farm equipment and other goods. Many farmers simply emigrared to Eire for work but a new politcal movement began to establish itself known as Communism. In 1850 Karl Marx a leader in the republican party released "The Communist Manifesto" which proposed Communism as the only proper economic system in a democracy like The West Republics. This caused a North-South split in the republican party as Communism attacked the Aristocracy aswell as Slavery which southern society was very heavily based on. The Communist Party was formed and advocated strongly for land redistribution and fiat money in Mainland Hibernia and York. The Federalists managed to compromise with the Communists in "The Land Reform Act" which allowed communes to be formed in York and Mainland Hibernia with land purchased by the industrialists in Erie from the Aristocracy in exchange The Eire was declared a Free Economic Zone. The State of York ammended its Constitution to name Communism as the official state economy
The Civil War (1900- Present)
With the inaugaration of a Communist Monarch and avowed abolitionist Abraham Swann in January of 1900 The southern state of Rein promptly seceded as put by the new President of Rein, Harry Jackson "We as free peoples find ourselves embroiled in the great struggle against Monarchs who would destroy our freedom and way of life... The tree of Liberty must be watered on occasion with the blood of tyrants and patriots alike". King Abraham used the succession of the south as an opportunity to declare all people residsing in The West Republics as citizens allowing the central government to take control of the state armies to protect the rights of the newly enfranchised slaves. The War began with several deadly battles including the battle of Olympus (35,000 casualties) The Battle of Prenuz (100,000 Casualties) and The Battle of Wayn (105,000 Casualties) the vast number of deaths made The Civil War the most deadly conflict in The Republics history with 573,000 casualties. Following these huge engagements The North adopted a more conservative strategy of bloackde. A Cease-Fire was declared in 1915 but a peace treaty was never signed and The south is still considered part of The Republics. The conflict continued for 200 years in the form of espionage economic warfare and assasinations (over a dozen Presidents and Monarchs were killed). In 2113 Rein ended Slavery and tensions cooled.
The Great War (1923-1928)
As Allies The West Republics assisted The Aquitanian Empire their former colonizer in the war against Fascist Mirellia. The Republics deployed several divisions of 50,000 men throughout the war however they were poorly equipped for the brutal trench warfare at best equipped with a single shot rifle and a helmet. This spurred a great push for industrialization and Eire became an even greater center of commerce and the communes in Mainland Hibernia collapsed and were replaced by new industry
Industrialization and Colonization (1928-2238)
In 1928 with rapid industrialization underway the Trade Company "Eire International" was formed and chartered by the Mayor of Eire. This company marked the beggining of the formation of the West Republics Empire. The company established business and trade routes throughout the world and maintained control over several territories with its own private armies and navy. Several new states were incorporated into The West Republics throughout this era and many atrocities were committed against native populations for the sake of profit. "Eire International became a popular investment for common people in The Republics including investments from communes in the north. The company was forced to scale back operations in 2238 in the face of international pressure and revolt which sparked The Great Depression as half of all government revenues dissipated and the end of The Empire. Throughout this era The Republics became a center of manufacturing aswell as finance and became famous for its weapons automotives and aviation industries. In the year 3285 Eire International was given the go ahead to conduct economic activites in foreign countries. The Company has plans to establish oil, production and provide finance air transport and other services in first world countries The Republics are affiliated with. Including neighbors The Republic of Norms, The Kingdom of Constantine and other members of The Union Federation.
The economy of The West Republics is a developed mixed economy based strongly on Services Manufacturing and the Mining industries while The West Republics is rather wealthy economic growth is predicted to continue as Eire International a nationally chartered enterprise continues to develop business internationally. Over 50% of The Republics economy is based on services including mostly small businesses and finance. Manufacturing in The Republics is comprised of Auto Manufacturing, Oil Refinement, medical and military supplies production. The Republics is also a large air transport hub with 7 major airports located in Hibernia. The Republcics have a significant oil industry there being large offshore oil deposits in the Hibernian Sea aswell as off the coast of York and Constantine. Fish Wine Construction industries are also present along with electricity production mostly occurring in York. The Economy of The Republics is highly globalized especially in Hibernia as such Hibernia runs a large enterprise, Eire International, which is dedicated to running businesses abroad. Currently Eire International employs 8 million workers in 13 different countries (mostly members of The Union and regional neighbors) and provides 2 billion in income per month to Hibernia. These operations are expected to grow with a goal of 10 billion monthly income being provided to the state by 3400 as well as numerous jobs for foreign nationals. Other future plans for economic growht include the development of a hi tech industry
The Culture of The West Republics is very unique containing influences from many different cultures including Aquitanian Constantino and traditional Hibernian. The country itself also is very diverse there being several different culturally distinct regions including Yorkian Northern Hibernian and Eirean The Yorkians are strongly influenced by the Kingdom of Constantine due to the proximity and immigration many Yorkians speak Spanish and celebrate Constantino Holidays the Yorkian culture is also influenced by its distinct history which was the home to progressive movements and communist thought. Many people in York still live on communes or in rural self sustaining areas. The Island of Eire is also very distinct being highly urbanized commercialized and globalized it is the political economic and population center of the country and has strong Aquitanian and cosmopolitan influence. The Island has a history of being dominated primarily by industrialists though industry is still very present the wealth and influence is spread more evenly thanks to liberal reforms. Northern Hibernia has a history of being dominated by the aristocracy and the traditional Hibernian influence and conflict between communists industrialists and the aristocracy still lingers it is rather more urbanized then York but still has large pockets of rural areas and mountainous wilderness